Sold for $293,250
Width: 9' 10” (3.00-m)
Height: 9' 11” (3.02-m)
Hull front: 2” (51-mm)
Turret front: 2.5 (63-mm)
1x 75-mm CN75-50 cannon
1x .50-cal M2HB machine gun
2x .30-cal M1919A4 machine gun
Engine: Cummins V-8 diesel, 460-hp
Speed: 31-mph (50-km/h)
The tank being offered, M50 Israeli Sherman Medium Tank, is in beautiful condition. It is based on an M4A4 hull and has been upgraded by the Israelis with a Cummins diesel and HVSS. In Israeli terms, this version of the M50 is considered to have all of the final modifications done to it. It has the later engine deck with the exhaust louvers cut into it and the engine exhaust outlet mounted on the rear of the engine deck. An exhaust outlet for the auxiliary generator is fitted to the left side of the hull. It has full applique armor on both the hull and turret. A bracket for carrying a roll of barbed wire is mounted on the driver's applique armor plate. Exterior and interior paint are perfect. The turret bares the tank number “A-2” in Hebrew. All exterior lights are present and intact. A bracket for a main armament searchlight is mounted on the mantlet. However, the searchlight is not included. A canvas cover that is in excellent condition seals the gap between the gun mantlet and front of the turret. The turret roof in front of the commander's cupola has been fitted by the Israelis with a second machine gun pintle socket. The tracks, wheels and other suspension components are perfect. It is currently equipped with T84 rubber block tracks. Two different drive sprocket plates are fitted to this tank, the D47366B forged type and the D47366 flat plate type. The engine runs well and the vehicle drives well. All driver controls function normally. The turret has the hand-operated spotlight mounted on the roof. The commander's turret hatch rotates freely on its ball race. All hatches open and close normally. The canvas head pads on the hatches are in very good condition. The main armament elevates and depresses manually. The turret rotates manually. The operational status of the hydraulic turret traverse is not known. A U.S. VRC-type radio is installed inside the turret bustle; however, it is not known if it is operational. Crew intercom boxes are mounted at each crew station. All periscope glass is in good condition. Several spare periscope blocks are included. It comes equipped with six spare track links, two spare roadwheels, seven Israeli pattern plastic water cans, and several machine gun ammunition boxes. Pioneer tools included with the tank include the axe, mattock and mattock handle.
While the Israeli Army was rebuilding and repairing the many Sherman tanks in the early 1950s that they had acquired from various scrapyards and vehicle dumps in Europe and the Philippines, they realized that these vehicles were under-gunned and would not be successful against the Arab armies who were equipped with Soviet produced weaponry such as the T-34/85 and SU-100 tank destroyer. With the U.S. and UK having arms embargoes in place against Israel, they turned to the French for help.
The French were in the process of building the AMX-13 light tank. The Israelis were looking at this vehicle for their army as well. They inquired about mounting the long 75-mm gun of the AMX-13 into a Sherman in order to increase its firepower. It was found that by extending the front and rear of the turret, the 75-mm gun would fit into the standard Sherman turret. The Israelis then placed an order for these upgraded vehicles, the first of which were delivered just in time for the 1956 Suez War where they proved more than a match for the Egyptian T-34/85's.
The M50 as the upgraded tank was called consisted of the 75-mm CN75-50 gun mounted in the modified turret. The designation “M50” came from the gun name. Around 300 or so Shermans of various types were converted to the M50 by 1959. Initially powered by a Continental radial engine and riding on the early VVSS suspension, M50's were eventually upgraded to a Cummins V-8 diesel and HVSS suspension. The M50 saw service in the 1967 Six Day War and with reserve units in the 1973 Yom Kippur War. They were retired from service in the late 1970s with some being given to Israel's South Lebanese Army ally.
Please note, this lot is a registered Destructive Device. Bidders for this lot must meet certain qualifications; please review the BATFE guidelines posted at Aucitonsamerica.com/littlefieldDD.
Transport Cost to Storage: $4,488